Kelley's Landing and Frankie Dettori after winning the Dubai Golden Shaheen.
The $2 million Gulf News Dubai Golden Shaheen (G1) is a 1200 meter (about 6 furlong) sprint on the dirt straightaway at Nad al Sheba. A full field of sixteen older horses went to post in the first Group 1 race of the evening, with Breeders' Cup Sprint winner Thor's Echo sent off as the lukewarm 7-2 favorite over South African hope and 5-1 second choice National Colour, entering the race off a 5 race win streak. Todd Pletcher trainee and Palos Verdes Stakes winner Friendly Island was the 7-1 third choice.
Kelly's Landing holds off Friendly Island to win the Dubai Golden Shaheen
Results for US wagering:
4th RACE NAD AL SHEBA - DUBAI GOLDEN SHAHEEN (Group 1) 3 - Kelly's Landing $20.90 $6.10 - 8 - Friendly Island $3.30 - 9 - Salaam Dubai $58.60 - Running time - 1:10.34 $2 EXACTA 3-8 $72.80 $2 TRIFECTA 3-8-9 $4884.30
Left: The trophy presentation for the Golden Shaheen. Winning owner Louise Lally said, "Even if we had not won, it would have still been so fantastic merely because everyone has been so good to us."
Right: The connections with the bowls given to the trainer and jockey. Winning trainer Eddie Kenneally (left side of photo) said, "Frankie (Dettori) has done exactly as he was told and that was a great performance from horse and jockey. The horse will have a bit of a rest now and it is just a shame that the owner is not here, though he is watching on television."
Kelly's Landing parades after winning the race. Jockey Frankie Dettori, winning his first Golden Shaheen, said, "American horses always handle the straight. What a ride he gave me. The trainer told me to get the rail and the plan worked out, he was getting a little leg weary at the end but the winning post came in time. He has a really good attitude. I was confident I had the race won two furlongs out when we went to the front and he has run on well, though he tired a bit in the end and I was glad to see the post. It is nice to win this race at last!"
Second place finisher Friendly Island in the paddock before the race with trainer Todd Pletcher on the right. His jockey Garrett Gomez said, "He was making up ground on the winner in the final furlong. My horse missed the break a little bit. He is not used to not having anybody in the gate with him. So overall he ran a really good race."
Third place finisher Salaam Dubai returns after the race. His jockey John Murtagh said, "He has run well, traveled well, stayed well to be third." Trainer Adi Selvaratnam added, "Obviously that is the best run of his life and I am very pleased. We knew he was quick and he has shown himself to be a top-class sprinter."
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